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'82 300gd
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Discussion Starter #1
since putting 235/85 16 s on my '82 300 gd,I find that the five cylinder diesels ability to move the lwb has gone from bad to very bad.Considering the options,the om617a,five cylinder turbo,is both hard to find (in Ireland),and hard on gearboxes,reputedly,even though mine is the 4 speed and supposed to be reasonably tough.Would the 6 cylinder om603 non turbo out of a w124 saloon make a good compromise.I think it should have either 113 or 125 bhp which is up a lot from the 88 of the 0m617.How hard a swap would it be ,and what gearbox would be suitable,manual or auto,for ease of transplant.I would love to hear,especially from those who have progressed from om617 to om603,(Jesus),about the effect of those extra bhp and whether even more power is needed.

bob
 

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230 G BGS 300G TDI
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For my money 617a turbo rebuild the engine reprofile cam, intercool it, 5 speed box rebearinged, sintered clutch 32" tyres on 15 inch rims
lift front springs 2" rear 2.5" fit 463 front and rear bumpers VW head lights white indicators and you will have a truck to last a life time.
Like this one. that belongs to a man in Nottingham
 

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1987 280 GD TURBO
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132 Posts
617 turbo is by far a simpler transplant and better
engine. 603 will not mate to your transmission.
dont know about ireland but here in Canada
there are more 617a than 603 engines to be found.
 

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1980 LWB 280GE
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warren t - 3/26/2005 11:12 AM
....here in Canada there are more 617a than 603 engines to be found.
I think this is the one and only place that we in North America have a tiny advantage over our friends across the pond. We're very lucky to have such a great supply of such an excellent engine in the 617A. I don't think they exist in the junkyards with such common-ness anywhere else in the world. And 9/10 of the time there's nothing at all wrong with the engine, just some bent bodywork.

We need to get an exchange pipeline going. Get the Brits to send the gearboxes we covet this way, and we'll trade them even-up for turbodiesels going the other!

[:)]

-Dave G.
 

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85 300GD 83 300TD
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The 617A Turbodiesel motors were in production in passenger cars from '77 through August of '85. They started in the 116 chassis, the first SD. Production numbers:
116 SD turbo: 28,634
123 CD turbo: 8,007
123 TD trubo: 28,219
123 D turbo: 75,261
126 SD turbo: 78,725

Total of these turbo powered models is 218,846. There are a lot of them, but a huge number of these came to the US.
The NA 300 diesel 617 started life in a 240 D 3.0 in 1974. The production numbers of this engine are staggering, 331,999 300 D 123 chassis produced alone and the motor was used in many applications into 1986 or so. This motor has a cast cylinder head. It can withstand an overheat and keep on ticking. It has all mechanical fuel injection and can run on various fuels. They are a great choice for the G class 460/461 chassis. Another option if you can't find a turbo is to rebuild the motor you have for better performance.

-Dai
 

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'82 300gd
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Discussion Starter #6
this would be ideal Bill,but where to get a 617a,and still I would worry about the box.Also would the transfer box be up to it or would going for an automatic box help things.
 

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'91 G300D SWB Manual, '99 ML320 7 seater
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Dai - 3/26/2005 6:02 PM

The 617A Turbodiesel motors were in production in passenger cars from '77 through August of '85. They started in the 116 chassis, the first SD. Production numbers:
116 SD turbo: 28,634
123 CD turbo: 8,007
123 TD trubo: 28,219
123 D turbo: 75,261
126 SD turbo: 78,725

Total of these turbo powered models is 218,846. There are a lot of them, but a huge number of these came to the US.
To put things in perspective, I believe that the only model which reached Europe was the W123 TD Turbo so we had to make do with a share of a tenth of the overall production!

Cheers
 

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230 G BGS 300G TDI
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Rob the auto box & 617a can not be fitted in a G but if the 5 speed box is properly re-manufactured they are quite capable the other option is to fit the van derived military box as used in the 290 wolf's but this means major modification of the shifter's the transfer box is no problem nor are the diff's, the only thing that might break is your face into a smile when you drive the completed project.
 

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'82 300gd
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Discussion Starter #10
Bill,
is it two om617a s that you have located and have you any five speed boxes to match.Does the propshaft from gearbox to the transfer box have to be modified.What would these things cost.
 

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What does it entail to "rebuild the cam profile"? I am working on putting the 617 into a 280 GE. This car currently has an automatic. What sort of Highway numbers can I expect to attain, i.e. cruising speed. Is the the right transmission? Thank you very much.
 

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1980 LWB 280GE
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"rebuilding the cam profile" was refering to the normally aspirated engine. They can be pepped up a little by fitting the cam, cam supports, rockers, and valves from a turbo diesel.

You're much better off to start with a 300GD to make this conversion. I'm doing it now on a 280GE and if I wasn't so ....okay I'll say it.... emotionally attached.. to this vehicle, I can say I would have been better off selling the 280, buying a nice 300GD, and then doing the conversion.

But, my relationship with this truck is not a rational one, so that wasn't an option for me.
[:)]

I'm pretty well done with the procurement portions of the project and could put together a decent list of what you need. But it's not really fair to talk about those things until the project is finished. There might be a bunch more stuff I don't know about yet. But I hope not, 'cause I don't have much cash left!

-Dave G.

editing now - and per your question about cruising speed. I'm going with the 5-speed manual gearbox from the delivery van that 4x4rancher mentioned. That one has an OD of about .8:1 and it'll have me cruising on the highway at 80 mph at 3200 rpm with my 4.9 rear end gears and 235/85-16 tires.
 

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1987 280 GD TURBO
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617 turbo bolts right up to 280 automatic trans,
also auto trans from sedan works well.
Both should be moved ahead one inch with
engine to safely allow clearance of turbo
oil pan and front differential.
warren
 

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230 G BGS 300G TDI
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That is a correction to my previous, wont fit statemant, unless you move the engine mounts, but I have not been happy with the performance through the 123 auto box never tried it with a 280, I do have a 300 GD auto lying around so maybe I ought to try that.
 

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'82 300gd
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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks everyone for comments,
My desire to fit an om603 seems to be flawed,but was driven by the fact that it would be much easier to find one here than an om617a.
I think I have to go off-forum now and talk nicely to 4x4Rancher.
thanks again
 
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